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P O E M S 

B Y 

Mr. gray. 




T O 


S I R, 

Wh EN I prefent the Public with an 
elegant edition of Poems by Mr, Gray at 
a very moderate price, I perform an aftion 
which I am confident would have been highly 
grateful to the author had he been living, as 
every writer naturally wiihes to have his works 
handfomely printed and univerfally read, 

I flatter myfelf there is no impropriety in 
particularly infcribing thefe poems to a gentle- 
man who has judgement to diftinguilh, and 
tafte to relifli fine verfes, and who poflefles a 
heart capable of many virtues. 

I remain, with refpedt, 

S I R, 

Your very obedient fervant, 


aoth November^ — 

1777, The Editor. 




Soon after the publication of a former edition 
of Mr. Gray's poeins, in a fimilar form, the Rev. 
Mr. Mafon the author of Eifrida, gave notice to 
the publifher by a particular meffenger, that he 
had trefpaffcd upon his property, by inferting fifty 
lines in his volume which belonged to him, and 
threatened to feek legal redrefs in cafe fatisfaftion 
was not made for this offence. 

To this charge, fo abfurd in its nature, the pub- 
lifher could hardiy give credit. The praftice of 
taking extrafts from publications of all kinds is 

* Mr. Mafon claims, befides the above, Ode for Mufic, irregular^ 
-which were he to obtain the property of, would be a few more 
ftanzas in his favour. But this Ode was given to the public without 
fee or reward, by the author, in his life-time. And therefore it is 
prefumcd neither lau nor equity will carry it to Mr. Mafon. 



rA a 8 I yjL^' 

, common to every bookfeller, and every author, over 
the kingdom. ; and no perlon-'is guilty of it in a fu- 
perlor degree to Mr. Dodfley, the bookfeller em- 
ployed by Mr. Mafon. — ^Nay, Mr. Mafon him- 
felf had behaved in the manner complained of, 
and adapted without fcruplc to his quarto edition 
of Mr. Gray's poems, a large extraft v^hich he 
took from another work. It w\as true alfo, that 
the fifty lines had been printed indifcriminately by- 
others who pretended to no cxclufive property in 
them, that they were not v/ritten by Mr. Mafon, 
nor bequeathed to him particularly by the author.; 

From every circumftancc attending this matter, 
the ridicule cf the claim fet up became flronger. 
But fufpeftlng th^t' a gentleman of Mr. Mafon's 
fenfe and good charafter muf!: have jufter grounds 
of complaint than what appeared upon the face of 
• his mefTage, the publiflier requefced to be favoured 
with his addrcfs, in order to have a perfonal con- 
ference with him upon the fubjeft ; and at fame 
tini^" kffured his agent, tliat he meant not defign- 
edly to invade or to injure Mr. Mafon's property : 
Whether his mefTenger began to view the objeft of 
his million in too ludicrous -a view, is unknown, 
but it Is certain he refufcd to comply with this 
civil requilition, 



The publiPaer, however, defirous to come to aa 
explanation concerning this matter procured Mr* 
Mafon^s addrefs by another channel, and waited 
upon him. 

At this conference he proved, firft. That it was 
the immemorial praftice of bookfellers to take ex- 
tracts at pleafure, from new publications, and 
that none amongft them turned this practice to 
more account than Mr* Mafon's bookfeller and, 
fecondly, that even fuppofing the aft complained 
of to be an offence, it was hard to fingle out the 

* Mr. Becket in the year 1769 publiflied, at the price of One 
or Two Shillings, a well-written and popular poem, cohrilling of 
aljout 300 verffs, intitled " An Ode, Upon dedicating a Buildiifg, 
" and creeling a Statue, to Shakefpeare : by Mr. Gaiiick." Mr. 
Dodflcy without fcruple applied this performance to his own ufe, 
by infcrting it intirc in the Annual Rcgifter. Has Mr. Dodfiey 
made any compcnfation for this deliberate z€i of piracy to the 
proprietor ? Or has Mr. Becket fought redrcfs for the injury by a 
Chajiccry fuit ? Again, has Mr. Dodfley offered any compcnfation 
to Mr. Murray for the different piracies he has committed upon hi$ 
books ? Or do Mr. Mafon and his bookfeller affume an exclufive 
right to appropriate to their refpeftive ufes what portion they plcafe 
of every new literary performance that comes abroad, while they 
profecute another pcrfon with the utmoft feverity of the law for 
taking the fame liberty ? Mr. Dodfley takes deliberately every year 
1000 verfes for the ufe of his Annual Rcgiller with impunity; but 
the printing of 50 verfes inadvertently by the prcfcnt publiflier is 
converted into an heinous trefpafs, and becomes the ground of a ri- 
gorous legal inveftigation. 

A 3 pre- 


prefent publifher to render legal compenfation, wlio 
was not the firft aggreffor, as the book h:'d been print- 
ed by others who pretended to no exci'ufive right in 
it, long before his edition became ext; :v ; nor had 
he ever previoufly heard of Mr» Mafon'b prercnlions^ 
But in order to fliow how little reafon the author 
of Elfrida had particularly to cenfure him; without 
entering at all into the praftire of the trade on one 
hand, or the claim of property on the oiher, he de- 
lired Mr. Mafon to fpecify what fum he chofe to 
receive, as compenfation for the oftence complained 

The publiflier never admitted Mr. Mafon's legal 
right of property in thefe verfes ; he is indeed in- 
ftrufted that he poffcfies none : — but a great deal 
could not be exaftcd for fifty and the pub- 

liflier wiflied no gentleman of refpeftablc charafter 
to impute a deliberate injury to him, which he was 
certainly very far from intending. 

Mr. Mafon remouied filent to his overture; 
which the publiiher after repeating to him as dif- 
tinftly as he could, took his leave, imagining he 
defired time to confider of it. 

Such is thi faithful account of this little tranfac- 
tlon ; nor will Mr, Mafon difpute its authenticity 



or exaftnefs. The publlfher was a ftranger to Mr. 
Gray's executor, except by reputation. He is un- 
confcious of having failed in the refpeft due to him ; 
and the value of Mr. Mafon's charafter would not 
have fuffered diminution, had he been equally dif- 
pofed to treat the publiflier with civility and at- 

It was hardly poffible after this equitable pro- 
cedure, to expeft to be troubled with an opprellive 
profecution ; from any man fuch conduct would 
have been efteemed ungenerous ; from a clergyman, 
whofe duty it is to fowe peace and good will amongft 
men, it wears not a more favourable afpeft. 

Mr. Mafon, neverthelefs, without further no- 
tice, filed a bill in Chancery againft the pubiifher; 
and retained Mr. Thurlce, Mr. Wedderburn, and 
Mr. Dunning for his counfel-^^. 

* Mr. Mafon fends an agent profeffedly to require fatlsfaftion or 
compenfation for an infringement of property. Without entering 
into the merits of this claim, he is defired to prefcribe his own terms 
of redrefs. In return for this offer, he files a bill in Chancery againft 
the fuppofed offender, and continues to urge his fuit, merely to load 
the defender with coRs ; for he cannot entertain the molt diftant idea 
of being awarded damages for an infrmgement of lines of literary 
property^ admittmg (which is by no means granted) that his claim i» 
juftly founded. 

Let this behaviour be reconciled to honour, to morality, or (as 
Mr. Mafon is in holy orders to the pra&icc of piety ! 



Fifty lip?es furely cannot be an objeft for a man 
to throw a hundred pounds, or more money, after ; 
it leads an impartial perfon to imagine, that Mr* 
Mafon has a further objeft in view ; and that, al- 
tho' he has realized already near a thoufand pounds 
from the profits of his quarto edition of Mr. Gray's 
poems, he is not fatisfied, but dcfircsto fupprefs the 
publiflier's little volume altogether, altlio' it has not 
hitherto paid the expences incurred in printing it, 
in order to retain the monopoly of Mr. Gray's 
poems intirely in his own hands. 

If his behaviour can be reconciled to a belter 
principle the publiflier will readily confefs it, and 
wiflies to difcover a motive lefs felfifli, in order to 
fpeak of it; for altho' he difapproves of his con-- 
du£V, he difclaims all animofity towards Mr. Ma- 
fon, and is forry that the prefent recital docs n^t 
tend more to tlic credit of his charafter. 

But Mr. Mafon means to ere£l a monument in 
Weftminfter Abbey to the memory of Mr Gray 
with the profits acquired by his book; — will this 
intention, difinterefted as it is, if true, juftify or ex- 

* This report is new. Perhaps it has commenced fince the date 
of Mr. Murray's public letter to Mr. Mafon, In any view, how- 
ever, we confcfii the facrifice of fuch emolument to be great. 



cufe his prefent proceeding againft a man, who, fo 
far from offending, has offered him his own terms 
of compenfation for an aftion, m.erely becaufe he 
complained^ tho' it was both legally and morally 

In ereftinsr a monument to the honour of Mr. 
Gray, let Mr. Mafon be careful that he does not, 
by his behaviour, unthinkingly ere£l one of an- 
other kind for himfelf. Nor fliould this advice be 
dcfpifed becaufe it proceeds from a perfon he but 
little regards : truth is the fame, thro' whatever 
channel it runs. 

After this detail, it remains to fay fomething 
of the prefent edition ; and this can be comprized 
in a very few words. It cannot be denied that 
it appears under fome difad vantages ; but there are 
advantages to compenfate for thefe : The reader is 
left in full poffefiion of all Mr. Gray's valuable 
and bgji poems; and feme articles are added 
which are not to be met with in any other edition 
of the author's works. The plates are engraved 
at conliderable expence from original defigns ; and 
the frontifpiece to the Fatal Sijlers^ a newplate^hai 
been deligncd and engraved for this edition. 


Advertilement to this Edition - - - - 3 

A Short Account of the Life and Writings 
of Mr. Gray - -- -- -- n 

Laft Will and Teftament of Mr. Gray - - 25 
Tears of Genius, an Ode^ to iii: Memory of 

Mr. Gray - " " ' 33 

Ode on the Spring - - - - - 

Ode on the Death of a favourite Cat, drown- 
ed in a Tub of Gold Fifljes - - - 51 
Ode on a diftant Profpeft of Eton College - 57 
A Long Story - - - - - - 67 

Ode to Adverlity - ----81 

The Progrefs of Poefy, a Pindaric Ode - - 87 
The Bard, a Pindaric Ode - - - jqi 
The Fatal Sifters, an Ode - - - 121 
The Defcent of Odin, an Ode - - - 129 
The Triumphs of Owen, a Fragment - - 139 
Epitaph on Mrs. Clarke - - - - 145 

plegy written in a Counjry Church-yard - 149 






O F 

Mr. gray. 

M R. Thomas Gray, the fubject 
of this memoir, was born in Corn- 
hill, the twenty- fixth day of December 

1716. His grandfather had been a con- 

B fiderable 

xii A Short Account of 

fiderable merchant ; but his father, Mr. 
Philip Gray, exercifed the trade of a 
money-fcrivener ; and being of an in- 
dolent difpofition, he did not add to 
his paternal fortune. He negledled not 
however, the education of his fon ; 
whom he fent to Eton fchool ; where 
he contrafted an intimacy with Mr. 
Horace Walpole, who is at prefent fo 
diftinguifhed in the republic of letters, 
and with Mr. Richard Weft, a young 
gentleman of uncommon ability, whofc 
father was Lord Chancellor of Ireland. 

From Eton Mr. Gray, in the year 
1 734, removed to Cambridge, and was 
admitted a penfioner of St. Peter's Col- 
lege. Mr. Weft went to ftudy in Chrift- 
Church College at Oxford ; and thefe in- 

Mn. G R A Y. xiii 

genious friends now commenced an epif- 
tolary correfpondence, which, though 
not unworthy of their years, and of 
the hopes conceived of them, they little 
imagined was, one day, to be laid be- 
fore the public. 

They w^ere not long in their relpec- 
tlve univerfities, when they turned theii' 
attention to the ftudy of the ia\v. For, 
with that view, they found themfelves 
in London in the year 1 738. Mr. Weft 
took chambers in the Inner Temple, 
But Mr, Gray being invited by Mr. Wal- 
pole to accompany him in his travels, 
delayed, for a time, his application to 
a fcience, which, furely, did not fuit 
either his temper or his genius. 


XIV A Short Account of 

The improvement he received from 
vifiting France and Italy was doubtlefs 
very great. But the pleafure arifing 
from his travels, was painfully inter- 
rupted by the difagreement which arofe 
between him and Mr. Walpole. Their 
difpolitions were different. The penfive 
and philofophical turn of the former, 
did not well agree with the gaiety and 
livelinefs of the latter. They had fet 
out in the end of the year 1739, and 
they parted at Reggio in the year 1741. 
Many years, however, did not pafs till 
a reconciliation was produced between 
them, by the intervention and offices of 
a lady, who had a friendfhip for both. 

On Mr. Gray's return to London*, 

* September 1741. 


Mr. G R a Y. 

he found his father altogether wafled 
with the fevere attacks of the gout, to 
which he had long been fubjedl. Two 
months after, he loffc him, and fucceed- 
ed to a fcanty patrimony. The in- 
tention he had formed, of ftudying the 
law as a profeffion, began now to be 
fhaken. But his friends urging him to 
maintain his original purpofe, and the 
delicacy of his nature inducing him not 
to give them uneafinefs, by too fudden 
a declaration of the ftate of his mind, 
he went to Cambridge, and took his 
Batchelor's degree in the Civil Law. 
The time he had paffed in his travels, the 
intenfe labour required by the ftudy of 
the Corrimon Law, and, above all, the 
narrownefs of his fortune, eftranged 
him from a defign, which perhaps he 
B 3 had 

xvi A Short Account of 

had never entertalnred with affedioii or 
ardour ; and the anxiety excited by this, 
undecifivenefs as to the fcheme of hfe 
he fhould follow, was now embittered 
by the ficknefs of Mr. Weft, who had 
fom'e time languifhed in a confumption, 
and who, in June 1742, in the twenty- 
fixth year of his age, fell an unfufpedt- 
ing vidtim to this diftemper. 

A Ihort time before this cruel event, 
Mr. Gray had gone to vifit his mother,, 
in her retirement at Stoke,, near Wind- 
for, where he wrote his beautiful Ode 
on the Spring. And it is not impof- 
fiblc, but a prefage of what was to 
happen, occafioned the interefting me- 
lancholy which reigns in it. His re- 
grets it is eafier to conceive than to de- 

fcribe ; 

Mr. gray. xvii 

fcribe ; and they feem immediately to 
have given birth to a very tender fon- 
net in Engllfb, in the manner of Pe- 
trarque, and to a noble apoftrophe in 
Latin, which he intended as the intro- 
du£lion to one of his books, De principiis 
cogitandi^. It is alfo worthy of obfer- 
vation, that within three months after 
Mr. Weft's death, he appears to have 
compofed the Ode on a diftant profpe£t 
of Eton College, and the Hymn to Ad- 
verfity. Nor is it to be doubted, that 
his forrow for his beloved friend gave a 
tone to thefe delightful poems ; and the 
reader of fenfibility, who perufes them 
under this impreffion, will find an ad- 
ditional charm in them. 

* See his Memoirs by Mr, Mafon, 

B 4 The 

xviii A Short Account of 

The genius of Mr. Gray, which was 
averfe from the mechanifm and toil of 
bufinefs, joined to his paffion for ftudy 
and literature, incUned him to live at 
Cambridge, where he had free accefs to 
many valuable libraries. From the win- 
ter of the year 1742, to the end of his 
life, it was the feat of his reiidence ; and 
he was feldom abfent from it, except on 
occafional vilits to his mother, and dur-^ 
ing that period*, when, on the open- 
ing of the Britifh Mufeum, he took 
lodgings in Southampton Row, for the 
purpofe of examining, and extrafting 
from, the Harleian and other manu- 

Jt was not till the year 1750, that 

^ Between the years 1759 J 76ft 


Mr. gray. xix 

he put the laft hand to his much-cele- 
brated Elegy in a Country Church-yard. 
Mr. Walpole, who was infinitely de- 
lighted with it, comminiicated it in 
manufcript to many perlbns of diftinc- 
tion, who failed not to feel for and to 
beftow on the author the admiration and 
applaufe he fo juftly merited. In this po- 
lite and fafhionable circle was Lady Cob- 
ham, who wifhing much to be acquaint- 
ed with Mr. Gray, procured this plea- 
fure, by the means of her relation Mifs 
Speed, and of Lady Schaub. The hif- 
tory of this incident, the circumftances 
of which were fomewhat peculiar, he 
has thrown into a ballad, intitled, A 
I'rue Story. Of this piece the humour 
does not appear very ftriking ; and, 
though it has found admirers, the au- 

XX A Short Account of 

thor himfelf refufed it a place In his 
own edition of his poems. 

The year 1753 was memorable to 
Mr. Gray, by the lofs of his mother, 
whom he loved with an exemplary af- 
fedlion. In the year 1756, fome young 
men, who lived in the fame ftaircafe, 
and who fancied that birth and fortune 
gave them a title to be impertinent, dif- 
turbing him frequently and intentionally 
with their infults and riots, he found it 
neceffary to remove from Peter-houfe, 
and went to Pembroke- hall. In the 
year 1768, by the unfolicited influence 
of the Duke of Grafton, he was nomi- 
nated King's Profeflbr of Modern Hif- 
tory in the Univerfity of Cambridge, a 
place of 400I. a year. 


Mr. gray. xxr 

It appears, that in the early part of 
his Hfe, he had entertained the defire 
of publifhing an edition of Strabo ; and^ 
among his papers, there were many 
geographical difquifitLons, which had 
been made with that intention. He 
alfo left many explanatory and critical 
obfervations on the writings of Plato ;, 
and he had beftowed "ancommon labour 
on the j4)ithologia. A project worthy of 
him, and more interefting than any of 
thofe, was, A Hiftory of Eiiglilh Poetry, 
on which he had long meditated, but 
thought proper to. abandon, when he 
was informed that Mr. Warton, of Tri- 
nity College, Oxford, was engaged in a- 
fimllar purfuit. 

Among the branches of knowledge 


xxii A Short Account of 

in which he excelled, it would be im- 
proper not to mention Architecture ; 
and his Ikill in Heraldry was exa£l and 
extenfive. But what was moft pecu- 
liarly to his tafte, and engaged his at- 
tention the moft conftantly, was Natu- 
ral Hiftory. He left many notes on 
Linnaeus, and on Hudfon's Flora Anglica ; 
and while employed on Zoology, he ftu- 
died Ariftotle on that fubject, and ex- 
plained many of the obfcure paffages of 
that diftinguifhed Antient. Mufic he 
knew moft exquifitely ; and, while a- 
broad, he had acquired a fkill in Paint- 
ing. In a word, if Mathematics are 
excepted, there was not a part of huf - 
man learning which he had not ,f ult4Tv. 
vated with fuccefs* 

A pro- 

Mr. gray. xxiii 

A propenfity to melancholy, the con- 
ftant attendant of genius, was obfer- 
vable in Mr. Gray, from his earlieft 
years ; and a hereditary gout ferved 
^ to encourage it. About the end of 
May 1 77 1, he made a vifit to London ; 
but being oppreffed with feverifhnefs, 
and deje£lion of mind, he was advifed 
to leave his lodgings in Jermyn Street 
for Kenfington ; where a freer air fo far 
operated to his recovery, as to enable 
him to return to Cambridge. On the 
24th of July, however, a fudden fick- 
nefs, while at dinner, made him retire 
to his chamber, from the College hall. 
His malady, which was found to be the. 
gout in his flomach, continued to in- 
creafe, and baffled all the art of medi- 
cine. On the 29th, a ftrong convuliion- 



xxiv A Short Account, &c. 

fit feized him ; it returned with addi- 
tional violence on the 30th ; and the 
evening after, this ingenious poet, and 
cultivated fcholar, ceafed to adorn Eng- 
land and human nature. 



Last Will and Testament 

O F 



From the Registry of the Prerogative 
Court of Canterbury* 

In the name of god. Amen. 
I Thomas Gray, of Pembroke-hall, 
in the unlverfity of Cambridge, being of 
found mind and in good health of body, 
yet ignorant how long thefe bleffings 
may be indulged me. Do make this my 
laft will and teftameut in manner and 


xxvi LAST WILL op 

form following : Firft, I do defire that 
iny body may be depofited in the vault 
made by my late dear mother in the 
church - yard of Stoke - Pogeis, near 
Slough, in Buckinghamfhire, near her 
remains, in a coffin of feafoned oak, 
neither lined or covered, and (unlefs it 
be very inconvenient) I could wifh that 
one of my Executors may fee me laid in 
the grave, and diftribute among fuch 
honeft and indujftrious poor perfons in 
the faid parifh as he thinks fit, the fum 
of ten pounds in charity. Next I give 
to George Williamfon, Efq; my fecond 
coufin by the fathe/s fide, now of Cal- 
cutta in Bengal, the fum of five hundred 
pounds. Reduced Bank Annuities, now 
{landing in my name. I give to Anna 
Lady Goring alfo my fecond coufin by 
the father's fide, of the county of Suf- 
fexf five hundred pounds Reduced Bank 
Annuities, and a pair of large blue and 


Mr. gray, xxvli 

white old Japan china jars. Item^ I give to 
Mary Antrobus, of Cambridge, fpinfter, 
my fecond coufin by the mother's fide, 
all that my freehold eftate and houfe in 
the parlfh of St. Michael, Cornhill, 
London, now let at the yearly rent of 
fixty-five pounds, and in the occupation 
of Mr. Nortgeth, perfumer, provided 
that (he pay out of the faid rent, by 
half-yearly payments, Mrs. Jane OUifFe, 
my aunt, of Cambridge, widow, the 
fum of Twenty pounds per ann. during 
her natural life ; and after the deceafe 
of the faid Jane Olllffe, I give the faid 
eftate to the faid Mary Antrobus, To 
Have and To Hold, to her, her heirs 
and affigns for ever. Further I bequeath 
to the faid Mary Antrobus the fum of 
fix hundred pounds. New South -Sea 
Annuities, now ftanding in the joint 
names of Jane Olliffe and Thomas Gray, 
but charged with the payment of five 
.... C pounds 

xxviii LAST WILL of 

pounds per ann. to Graves Stokeley, of 
Stoke-Pogeis, in the county of Bucks ; 
which fum of fix hundred pounds, after 
the deceafe of the faid annuitant, does 
(by the will of Anne Rogers, my late 
aunt) belong folely and entirely to me ; 
together with all overplus of intereft in 
the mean time accruing. Further, if 
at the time of my deceafe there fhall be 
any arrear of falary due to me from his 
Majefty's treafury, I give all fuch arrears 
to the faid Mary Antrobus. Item^ I give 
to Mrs. Dorothy Comyns, of Cam- 
bridge, my other fecond coufin by the 
mother's fide, the fums of fix hundred 
pounds, Old South -Sea Annuities; of 
three hundred pounds. Four per Cent. 
Bank Annuities Confolidated ; and 
of two hundred pounds Three per 
Cent. Bank Annuities Cofolidated ; all 
now ftanding in my name. I give to 
Richard Stouehewer, Efq; one of his 


Mr. gray. xxix 

Majefty's Commlffioners of Excife, the 
fum of five hundred pounds, Reduced 
Bank Annuities ; and I beg his accep- 
tance of one of my diamond rings. I 
give to Dr. Thomas Wharton, of Old 
Park, in the bifhopric of Durham, five 
hundred pounds, Reduced Bank Annui- 
ties ; and defire him alfo to accept of 
one of my diamond rings. I give to 
my fervant, Stephen Hempftead, the 
fum of fifty pounds. Reduced Bank An- 
nuities ; and if he continues in my fer- 
vice to the time of my death, I alfo give 
him all my wearing apparel and linen. 
I give to my two coufins above men- 
tioned, Mary Antrobus and Dorothy 
Comyns, all my plate, watches, rings, 
china ware, bed linen, and table linen, 
and the furniture of my chambers at 
Cambridge, not otherwife bequeathed, 
to be equally and amicably lhared be- 
t^veen them. I give to the Reverend 
C 2 Wil- 


William Mafon, Precentor of York, all 
my books, manufcripts, coins, mufic, 
printed or written, and papers of all 
kinds, to preferve or deftroy at his own 
difcretion : And after my juft debts and 
the expewces of my funeral are difcharg- 
ed, all the refidue of my perfonal eftate 
whatfoever I do hereby give and bequeath 
to the faid Reverend William Mafon 
and to the Reverend Mr. James Browne, 
Prefident of Pembroke-hall, Cambridge, 
to be equally divided between them ; 
defiring them to apply the fum of two 
hundred pounds to an ufe of charity, 
concerning which I have already infor- 
med them : and I do hereby conftitute 
and appoint them, the faid William 
Mafon and James Browne, to be joint 
executors of this my laft will and tefta- 
ment. And if any relation of mine, or 
other legatee, fhall go about to moleft, 
or commence any fuit againft, my faid 


Mr. gray. xxxi 

executors in the execution of their office, 
I do, as far as the law will permit me, 
hereby revoke and make void all fuch 
bequefls or legacies as I had given to 
that perfon or perfons, and give it to be 
divided between my faid executors and 
refiduary legatees, whofe integrity and 
kindnefs I have fo long experienced, and 
who can beft judge of my true intention 
and meaning. In witnefs whereof, I 
have hereunto fet my hand and feal this 
fecond day of July, 1770. 


Signed, fealed, publifhed, and de- 
clared by the faid Thomas Gray, 
the teftator, as, and for, his laft 
will and teftament, in the pre- 
fence of us ; who in his pre- 
fence, and at his requeft, and 
in the prefence of each other, 
C 3 have 

xxxll LAST WILL, &c. 

have figned our names as wit- 

iiefles hereto, 

Richard Baker, 
Thomas Wilson, 
Joseph Turner. 

Proved at London the twelfth of 
Auguft, 1 77 1, before theWorfhip- 
ful Andrew Coltre Ducarel, Do6lor 
of Laws, and Surrogate, by the 
oaths of the Reverend WiUiam 
Mafon, Clerk, Mafter of Arts, and 
the Reverend James Browne, Clerk, 
Mafter of Arts, the executors ; to 
whom adminiftration was granted, 
having been firft fworn duly to ad- 

John Stevens, 

Henry Stevens, I ^'P^'^ 

Cjeo. Gostling^ J^n.J 



An ode. 


(By J. T .) 

On Cham's fair banks, where Learning's hal- 
low'd fane 
Majeftic rifes on th' aftonlfh'd fight, 
Where oft the mufe has led the favourite fwain, 
And warm'd his foul with Heaven's infpiring 

Beneath the covert of the fylvan fhade, 
Where deadly cyprefs, mix'd with mournful yew, 

Far o'er the vale a gloomy ftlllnefs fpread, 
Celellial Genius burfl: upon the view. 


xxxiv TEARS of GENIUS. 

The bloom of youth, the majefty of years, 
The foften'd afpeft, innocent and kind, 

The figh of forrow, and the ftreaming tears, 
Refiftlefs all, their various pow'r combin'd. 

In lier fair hand a filver harp flie bore, 

Whofe magic notes, foft - warbling from the 

Give tranquil joys the breaft ne'er knew before. 

Or raife the foul on rapture's airy wing. 
By grief impell'd, I heard her heave a figh. 
While thus the rapid ftrain refounded thro' the fky ; 

Hafte, ye filler powers of fong, 

Haften from the fhady grove. 
Where the river rolls along, 

Sweetly to the voice of love. 

Where, Indulging mirthful pleafures. 
Light you prefs the flow'ry green. 

And from flora's blooming treafures 
Cull the wreath for fancy's queen : 

Where your gently -flowing numbers. 
Floating on the fragrant breeze. 

Sink the foul in pleafing llumbers. 
On the downy bed of eafe. 



For graver ftralns prepare the plaintive lyre. 
That wakes the foftcft feelings of the foul ; 

Let lonely grief the melting verfe infpire, 
Let deepening forrow's folemn accents roll, 

Rack'd by the hand of rude difeafe. 

Behold our favVite poet lies ! 
While every objeft form'd to pleafe, 

Far from his couch ungrateful flies. 

The blifsful mufe, whofe favouring fmilc 

So lately warm'd his peaceful breaft, 
DifFufing heavenly joys the while, 
In tranfport's radiant garments dreft. 
With darkfome grandeur and enfeebl'd blaze. 
Sinks in the fhades of night, and fliuns his eager 

The gaudy train, who wait on Spring % 

Ting'd with the" pomp of vernal pride, 
The youth who mount on pleafure's wing -f^. 
And idly fport on Thames's lide, 
With cool regard their various arts employ, 
Nor roufe the drooping mind, nor give the paufc 
of joy. 

* Ode on Spring, 

+ Ode on the Profpeft C«i.Ltci« 



Ha ! what forms, with port fublime'*. 

Glide along in fuUen mood. 
Scorning all the threats of time. 

High above misfortune^s flood ? 

They feize their harps, they ftrike the lyre, 
With rapid hand, with freedom's fire. 
Obedient nature hears the lofty found. 
And Snowdon's airy cliffs the heavenly ftrains rc- 

In pomp of ftate, behold they wait, 

With arms outftretch'd, and afpefts kind. 
To fnatch on high to yonder Iky, 
The child of fancy left behind : 
Forgot the woes of Cambria's fatal day. 
By rapture's blaze impelled, they fwell the artlcft 

But ah in vain they ftrive to footh. 
With gentle arts, the tort' ring hours ; 

Adversity -f-, with rankling tooth, 
Her baleful gifts profufely pours. 

Behold fhe comes, the fiend forlorn, 
Array'd in horror's fettled gloom ; 

* Bard, an Ode. 

■f Hymn to Adversitv. 



She ftrews the briar and prickly thorn. 
And triumphs in th' infernal doom. 
With frantic fury and infatiate rage, 
She knavvs the throbbing breaft, and blafts the 
glowing page. 

No more the foft Eolian flute* 

Breathes thro' the heart the melting ftraln; 
The powers of Harmony are mute, 
And leave the once-delightful plain ; 
With heavy wing I fee them beat the air, 
Damp'd by the leaden hand of comfortlefs delpair. 

Yet ftay, O ! ftay, celeftial pow'rs, _ 

And with a hand of kind regard, 
Difpel the boift'rous ftorm that lours 
Deftruftive on the fav'rite bard ; 
O watch with me his laft expiring breath, 
And fnatch him from the arms of dark, oblivion* 

Hark the Fatal Sisters 

And with horror's mutt' ring founds, 

Weave the tiiTue of his line, 

While the dreadful fpell refounds, 

♦ The Pr«cr£8$ of Poetry, 
f The Fatal Sistsjis, an Ode. 

« Hail, 


Hall, ye midnight lifters, hail, 
" Drive the fliuttle fwift along ; 
Let our fecret charms prevail 
O'er the valiant and the ftrong. 

O'er the glory of the land. 
O'er the innocent and gay, 
O'er the mufcs' tuneful band, 

Weave the fun'ral web of Gray.'^ 

*Tis done, 'tis done — the iron hand of pain. 
With ruthlefs fury and corrofive force^ 

Racks every joint, and feizes every vein : 
He finks, he groans, he falls a lifelefs corfe. 

Thus fades the flow'r nip'd by the frozen gale, 
Tho' once fo fvireet, fo lovely to the eye : 

Thus the tall oaks, when boift'rous ftorms affail. 
Torn from the earth, a mighty ruin lye. 

Ye facred fifters of the plaintive verfe. 

Now let the ftream of fond afFeftion flow ; 

O pay your tribute o'er the flow-drawn hearfe, 
With all the manly dignity of woe. 

Oft when the Curfew tolls Its parting knell. 
With folemn paufe yon Church -Yard's 
gloom furvey ; 



While forrow's fighs, and tears of pity tell. 
How juft the moral of the poet's lay^. 

O'er his green grave, in contemplation's guifc. 
Oft let the pilgrim drop a filent tear ; 

Oft let the fhepherd's tender accents rife. 
Big with the fwects of each revolving year; 

Till proftrate time adore his deathlefs name, 

Fix'd on the folid bafe of adamantine fame. 

* Elegy in a Country Church-Yard. 



B Y 

G R A 




L O ! where the fofy-bofom'd hours. 
Fair Venu^' train, appear, 
JDifcIofe the long-exped:ing flowers. 
And wake the purple year ! 
The Attic warbler pours her throat, 
Refponfive to the cuckow's note. 



The untaught harmony of fpring : 
While, whifp'ring pleafure as they fly. 
Cool Zephyrs thro' the clear blue Iky 
Their gathered fragrance fling. 

Where-e'er the oak's thick branches fl:retch 

A broader browner fliade ; 

Where-e'er the rude and mofs-grown beech 

O'er-canopies the glade ; 

Befide fome water's rufliy brink 

With me the Mufe fliall fit, and think, 

(At eafe reclin'd in ruftic ftate). 

How vain the ardour of the crowd. 

How low, how little are the proud. 

How indigent the great ! 

« , a bank 

O'cr-canopied with lufcious woodbine. 

. S/iake/p, Mid/, Night's Drtam* 



Still is the toiling hand of Care ; 

The panting herds repofc : 

Yet hark, how thro' the peopled air 

The bufy murmur glows ! 

The infedt youth are on the wing, 

Eager to tafte the honied fpring. 

And float amid the liquid noon * : 

Some lightly o'er the current fkim. 

Some fliew their gayly-gilded trim 

Quick-glancing to the fun ^ . 

* Xare per aeftatem liquidam — ■ 

Virgil. Georg. lib. ^, 

+ . fporting with quick glance, 

Shew to the fun their wav'd coats dropt with gold. 

Mi/ton's Paradi/c LoJ^ book 7 


To Contemplation's fober eye 

Such is the race of man : 

And they that creep, and they that fly. 

Shall end where thq^ began. 

Alike the bufy and the gay 

But flutter thro' life's little day, 

In Fortune's varying colours drefl: : 

Brufli'd by the hand of rough Mifchancc, 

Or chill'd by Age, their airy dance 

They leave in duft to refl:. 

Methinks I hear, in accents low. 
The fportive kind reply ; 
Poor Moralifl: ! and what art thou ? 
A folitary fly ! 

* While infe£ts from the threfliold preach, &c, 

M. Green, in the Grottg, 
Dodjlefs MifcslUnUs^ Vol, ^, p, i6i. 


Thy joys no glittering female meets. 
No hive haft thou of hoarded fvveets. 
No painted plumage to difplay : 
On hafty wings thy youth is flown ; 
Thy fun is fet^ thy fpring is gone — 
We frolic while ^tis May, 

D 3 


O D E 



Drowned in a Tub of Gold Fiflies, 



Drowned in a Tub of Gold Fiflies. 

1 WAS on a lofty vafe's fide, 
WHiere China's gayeft art had dy'd 

The azure flowers, that blow ; 
Demureft of the tabby kind. 
The penfive Selima reeling, 
Gaz'd on the lake below. 

Her confcious tall her joy declared ; 
The fair round face, the fnowy beard. 
The velvet of her paws ; 



Her coat, that with the tortoife vies. 
Her ears of jet, and emerald eyes. 
She faw ; and purr'd applaufe. 

Still had fhe gaz'd ; but 'midft the tide 
Two angel forms were feen to glide. 

The Genii of the ftream : 
Their fcaly armour's Tyrian hue, 
Thro^ richeft purple to the view 

Betray'd a golden gleam. 

The haplefs nymph with wonder faw : 
A whilker firft, and then a claw. 

With many an ardent wilh. 
She ftretch'd, in vain, to reach the prize. 
What female heart can gold defpife ? 

What cat's averfe to fifh ? 



Prefumptuous maid ! with looks intent 
Again flie ftretch'd, again fhe bent. 

Nor knew the gulph between : 
(Malignant Fate fat by, and fmird) 
The flipp'ry verge her feet beguil'd. 

She tumbled headlong in. 

Eight times emerging from the flood 
She mew'd to ev^ry watVy God, 

Some fpeedy aid to fend. 
No Dolphin came, no Nereid fllrr'd. 
Nor cruel Tom, nor Sufan heard. 

A fav'rite has no friend ! 

From hence, ye beauties, undeceiv'd. 
Know, one falfe ftep is ne'er retrieved. 
And be with caution bold. 


54 - ODE, &c. 

Not all that tempts your wand'ring eyes. 
And heedlefs hearts, is lawful prize ; 
Nor all that glifters, gold. 





O F 








E diftant fpires, ye antique towers. 

Where grateful Science ftill adores 

Her Henry holy lliade ; 

And ye, that from the (lately brow 

Of Windsor's heights th' expanfe below 

• King Hs H 8LY the Sixth, founder of the College. 

That crown the wat'ry glade^ 


Of grove, of lawn, of mead furvey, 
Whofe turf, whofe fnade, wliofe flowers among 
Wanders the hoary Thames along 
His filver-wlnding way* 

Ah happy hills ! ah pleafing fliade 1 

Ah fields belov'd In vam ! 

Where once my carelefs childhood ftray'd, 

A ftranger yet to pain ! 

I feel, the gales that from ye blow, 

A momentary blifs beftow. 

As waving frefli their gladfome wing. 

My weary foul they feem to footh. 

And, * redolent of joy and youth, 

To breath a fecond fpruig. 

* And bees their honey redolent of fpring. 

Drydai'j FabU on the Pythag. Sspem» 



Say^ Father Thames^ for thou haft feen 

Full many a fprightly race 

DIfporting on thy margent green 

The paths of pleafure trace ; 

Who foremoft now delight to cleave^ 

With pliant arms, thy glaffy wave ? 

The captive linnet, which enthral ? 

What idle progeny fucceed 

To chafe the rolling circle's fpeed. 

Or urge the flying ball ? 

While fome on earneft bufinefs bent 

Their murmuring labours ply 

'Gainft graver hours, that bring conftraint 

To fweeten liberty : 

Some bold adventurers difdain 

The limits of their little reign. 

And unknown regions dare defcry : 

E Still 


Still as they run they look behind. 
They hear a voice in every wind. 
And fnatch a fearful joy. 

Gay hope is theirs by fancy fed, 
Lefs pleafing when poffelt ; 
The tear forgot as foon as fhed. 
The funfhine of the breafi: : 
Theirs buxom Health of rofy hue. 
Wild wit, Invention ever-new. 
And lively Cheer of Vigour born ; 
The thoughtlefs day, the eafy night. 
The fpirits pure, the flumbcrs light. 
That fly th' approach of morn. 

Alas ! regardlefs of their doom. 
The little victims play ! 
No fenfe have they of ills to come. 
Nor care beyond to-day : 


Yet fee^ how all around 'em wait 
The mlnifters of human fate. 
And black Misfortune's baleful train ! 
Ah, fliow them where in ambulh ftand. 
To feize their prey, the murderous band ! 
Ah, tell them they are men I 

Thefe lhall the fury paffions tear^ 
The vultures of the mind, 
Difdainful anger, pallid fear. 
And fhame that fkulks behind ; 
Or pining Love fliall wafte their youth. 
Or Jealoufy, with rankling tooth. 
That inly gnaws the fecret heart ; 
And Envy wan^ and faded Care, 
Grim-vifag'd comfortlefs defpair, 
And Sorrow's piercing dart. 



Ambition this fhall tempt to rife. 
Then whirl the wretch from high. 
To bitter Scorn a facrifice. 
And grinning infamy. 
The flings of Falfehood thofe fliall try. 
And hard Unkindnefs' altered eye, 
That mocks the tear it forc'd to flow ; 
And keen Remorfe with blood defil'd. 
And moody Madnefs laughing wild 
Amid fevereft woe. 

Lo, in the Vale of Years beneath, 
A grifly troop are feen. 
The painful family of Death, 
More hideous than their queen : 

* And Miidnefs laughing in his ireful mood. 

Dry den's fable of Palainon a?id Arcite, 



This racks the joints, this fires the veins, 
That every labouring finew ftrains, 
Thofe in the deeper vitals rage : 
Lo, Poverty, to fill the band. 
That numbs the foul with icy hand. 
And flow-confuming Age. 

To each his fuflf'rings : all are men. 

Condemned alike to groan ; 

The tender for another's pain ; 

Th' unfeeling for his own. 

Yet, ah ! why fliould they know their fate ! 

Since forrow never comes too late. 

And happinefs too fwiftly flies. 

Thought would deftroy their paradife. 

No more — where ignorance is blifs, 

Tis folly to be wife. 


The Curfew tolls the knell of parting day ; 

The lowing herd winds slowly o'er the lea ; 
The ploughman homeward plods his weary way, 

And leaves the world to darkness and to me. 




Mr. Gray's Elegy in tlie Country Church 
Yard, before it appeared in print, was handed about 
in manufcript ; and amongft other eminent perib- 
nages who law and admired it, was the Lady Cob- 
ham, who relided at the Manfion-houfe at Stoke- 
Pogeis. The performance induced her to wifli for 
the author's acquaintance ; and Lady Schaub and 
Mifs Speed, then at her houfe, undertook to efFcft 
it. Thefe two ladies waited upon the author at his 
aunt's folitary manlion, where he at that time re- 
lided ; and not finding him at home, they left a card 
behind them. Mr. Gray, furprifed at fuch a com- 
pliment, returned the vilit. And as the beginning 
of this acquaintance wore a little of thcTace of 
romance, he foon after gave a fanciful and pleafant 
account of it in the following copy of verfes, which 
he entitled A Long Story. 

Although this performance certainly pofleffes 
great humour, yet it is not immediately perceived; 
and has not been univerfally relifhed. The author 
perceived Ihis himfelf, and- owned it candidly.— 
The verfes," he writes to Dr. Wharton, you 
fo kindly try to keep in countenance, were wTit- 
ten merely to divert Lady Cobham and her fa- 
mily, and fucceeded accordingly ; but being 
fliewed about in tov/n, are not liked at all." This 
laft confideration induced Mr. Gray to rejedl them 
in the CoUeftion wliich he himfelf made of his 

Mr. Gray's Executor having thought fit to 
rcftorc them, they are retained here. 


In Britain's ifie^ no -matter where. 
An ancient pile of building ftands : 
The Hiintingdons and Hattons there 
Ernploy'd the power of Fairy hands. 

To raife the ceiling's fretted height. 
Each pannel in achievements cloathing, 
Rich windows that exclude the light. 
And paflages, that lead to nothing. 


Full oft within the fpacious walls. 
When he had fifty winters o'er him. 
My grave Lord-Keeper led the Brawls : 
The Seal and Maces danc'd before him. 

His bufliy beard, and ihoe-ftrings green, 
His high-crown'd hat, and fatin doublet, 
Mov'd the flout heart of England's Queen, 
Tho' Pope and Spaniard could not trouble it. 

WHiat, in the xcry firfl beginning ! 
Shame of the verfifying tribe ! 
Your Hiil'ry whither are you fpinning ? 
Can you do nothing but dcfcribe ? 

A Houfe there Is, (and that^s enough) 
From whence one fatal morning iflues 

* Hatton. prcferr'd by Queen Elizabeth for his graceful pcrfon 
and tine Dancing. 

A brace 


A brace of warriors, not in buff. 
But ruftling in their filks and tiflues. 

The firft came cap-a-pee from France 

Her conquVing dcftiny fulfilling. 
Whom meaner beauties eye afKance, 

And vainly ape her art of killing. 

The other Amazon kind heaven 
Had arm'd with fpirit, wit, and fatire : 
But Cobham had the polifli given. 
And tipp'd her arrows with good-nature. 

To celebrate her eyes, her air 

Coarfe panegyrics would but teaze her. 

Melifla is her Nom de Guerre. 

Alas, who would not wifn to pleafe her ! 



With bonnet blue and capuchin. 
And aprons long they hid their armour. 
And veird their weapons bright and keen 
In pity to the country-farmer. 

Fame in the lhape of Mr. P---t 
(By this time all the Parifli know it) 
Had told, that thereabauts there lurk'd 
A wicked Imp they call a Poet ; 

Who prowl'd the country far and near, 
Bewitch'd the children of the peafants. 
Dried up the cows, and lam'd the deer. 
And fuck'd the eggs, and kill'd the pheafants. 

My Lady heard their joint petition. 
Swore by her coronet and ermine. 



She'd iflue out her high commiffion 
To rid the manor of fuch vermin. 

The Heroines undertook the tafk. 
Thro' lanes unknown^ o'er ftiles they ventur'd^, 
Rapp'd at the door, nor ftay'd to alk, 
But bounce into the parlour enter'd. 

The trembling family they daunt, 
They flirt, they fing, they laugh, they tattle. 
Rummage his Mother, pinch his Aunt, 
And up ftairs in a whirlwind rattle. 

Each hole and cupboard they explore, 
Each creek and cranny of his chamber, 
Run hurry-lkurry round the floor. 
And o'er the bed and tefler clamber ; 



Into the Drawers and China pry. 
Papers and bcK)ks, a huge Imbroglio I 
Under a tea-cup he might lie. 
Or crealed, like dogs-ears, in a folio. 

On the firft marching of the troops 
The Mufes, hopelefs of his pardon, 
Convey'd him underneath their hoops 
To a fmall clofet in the garden. 

So Rumour fays : (Who will, believe.) 
But that they left the door a-jar. 
Where, fafc and laughing in his fleeve. 
He heard the difcant din of war. 

Short was his joy. He little knew. 
The power of magic was no fable ; 



Out of the window, whilk, they flew. 
But left a fpell upon the table. 

The words too eager to unriddle 
The poet felt a ftrange dllbrder : 
Tranfparent birdlime formcl the middle. 
And chains invifible the border. 

So cunning was the Apparatus^ 
The powerful pothooks did fo move him. 
That, will he, nill he, to the Great-houlB 
He went, as if the devil drove him. 

Yet on his way (no fign of grace. 
For folks in fear are apt to pray) 
To Phcebus he preferred his cafe. 
And begg'd his aid that dreadful day. 


The Godhead would have back'd his quarrel. 
But with a blufh on rccoUeftion 
Own'd, that his quiver and his laurel 
^Gainft four fuch eyes were no protection. 

The Court was fat, the Culprit there, 
Forth from their gloomy manfions creep!: 
The Lady Janes and Joans repair. 
And from the gallery ftand peeping : 

Such as in filence of the night 

Come (fweep) along fomc winding entry 

(■^Styack has often feen the fight) 

Or at the chapel-door ftand fentry ; 

In peaked hoods and mantles tarnifti'd. 
Sour vifages, enough to fcare ye, 

* The Iloufe-keepcr. 



High Dames of honour once^ that garnilh'd 
The drawing room of fierce Queen Mary ! 

The Peerefs comes. The Audience flare. 
And doff their hats with due fubmiffion : 
She curtfies, as Ihe takes her chair. 
To all the People of condition. 

The Bard with many an artful fib, 

Had in imagination fenc'd him, 

Difprov'd the arguments of Squib -^''j 

And all that Groom-f could urge againft him* 

But foon his rhetoric forfook him, 
When he the folemn hall had feen ; 
A fudden fit of ague Ihook him. 
He flood as mute as poor Macleane |* 

* Groom of the Chambers. 
+ The Steward, 

$ A famous Highwayman hang'd the week before^ 

F Yet 


Yet fomething he was heard to mutter, 
^ How in the Park beneath an old-tree 
^ (Without defign to hurt the butter, 
^ Or any malice to the poultry,) 

^ He once or twice had penned a fonnet ; 

^ Yet hop'd that he might fave his bacon : 

^ Numbers would give their oaths upon it, 

^ He ne'er was for a conj'rer taken/ 

The ghoftly prudes with hagged face 
Already had condemned the finner. 

My Lady rofe, and with a grace 

She fmird, and bid him come to dinner. 

^ Jefu-Maria ! Madam Bridget, 

^ Why what can the Vifcountefs mean ? * 



(Cried the fquare Hoods in woeful fidget) 
^ The times are altered quite and clean ! 

* Decorum's turn'd to mere civility ; 
^ Her air and all her manners Ihew it# 
^ Commend me to her affability ! 
^ Speak to a Commoner and Poet ! ^ 

[^Here 500 Stanzas are bJIJ] 

And fo God fave our noble King, 

And guard us from long-winded Lubbers^ 

That to eternity would fing, 

And keep my Lady from her Rubbers* 


O D 


T O 

D V E R S I T Y. 

OiVTd itvpist}; \^/jnv. 

^ S c H Y L U 5 , in Agamcmnone. 


T O 


Daughter of Jove, relentlefs power. 
Thou tamer of the human breaft, 
Whofe iron fcourge, and torturing hour. 
The bad affright, affiid the beft ! 
Bound in thy,, adamantine chain. 
The proud are taught to tafte of pain. 
And purple tyrants vainly groan 
With pangs unfelt before, unpitied and alone. 



When firft thy Sire to fend on earth 
Virtue, his darling child, defign'd 
To thee he gave the heavenly birth. 
And bade to form her infant mind. 
Stern rugged nurfe ! thy rigid lore 
With patience rpany a year fhe bore : 
What forrow was, thou bad'ft her know. 
And from her own Ihe learn'd to melt at others 

Scar'd at thy frown terrific, fly 
Self-pleafing Folly's idle brood. 
Wild Laughter, Noife, and thoughtlefs Joy, 
And leave us leifure to be good. 
Light they difperfe ; and with them go 
The fummer-friend, the flatt'ring foe ; 
By vain Profperity received. 
To her they vow their truth, and are again 



Wifdom in fable garb array 'd. 
Immersed in rapturous thought profound. 
And Melancholy, filent maid 
With leaden eye, that loves the ground. 
Still on thy folemn fteps attend : 
Warm Charity, the general friend. 
With Juftice to herfelf fevere. 
And Pity, dropping foft the fadly-pleafing tear. 

Oh, gently on thy fuppliant's head. 
Dread Goddefs, lay thy chaft'ning hand ! 
Not in thy Gorgon terrors clad. 
Nor circled with the vengeful band 
(As by the impious thou art feen) 
With thund'ring voice, and threatening 

With fcreaming Horror's funeral crj^, 
Pefpair^ and fell Difeafe^ and ghaftly Poverty, 



Thy form benign^ oh Goddefs, wear. 
Thy milder influence impart, 
Thy philofophic train be there 
To foften, not to wound my heart. 
The gen'rous fpark extinft revive. 
Teach me to love, and to forgive, 
Exadt my own defedts to fcan. 
What others are to feel ; and know myfelf a 






Ae TO TXV ipfitlVifO/ 

Pindar, Olymph. II. 


When the author firfl publlflied this and 
the following ode, he was advifed, even by 
his friends, to fubjoin fome few explanatory 
notes ; but had too much refpedt for the 
underftanding of his readers to take that 




i. I. 

Awake, iEolian lyre, awake *. 

And give to rapture all thy trembling ftrings. 

From Helicon's harmonious fprings 

A thoufand rills their mazy progrefs take : 


* Awake, mv glory : awake, lute aud harp. 

David's Pfalms^ 

Pindar ftyles his O'.vn poetry, with its mufical accompanyments, 
Aiohig ftoXTjj, ^AitXtS'tQ ^t®/*^^'* AioxlS'st? Tryoat etvKeir, ^oliaa 
fong, ^olian ftrin^^s, the breath of the ^£olian flute. 

The fubjeft and firaile, as ufual with Pindar, are here united* 
The various fources of poetry, which gives lite and luftre to all it 
touches, are here deicnbcd ; as well in its quiet majeflic progrefi 
enriching every fubje6l (otherwife dry and barren) with all the 



The laughing flowers, that round them blow. 
Drink life and fragrance as they flow. 
Now the rich ftream of mufic winds along. 
Deep, majeftic, fmooth, and ftrong, 
Tho' verdant vales, and Ceres* golden reign : 
Now rov.'ling down the fteep amain. 
Headlong, impetuous, fee it pour : 
The rocks and nodding groves rebellow to the 

I. 2. 

Oh ! Sovereign-- of the willing foul, 
Parent of Aveet and folemn-breathing airs. 
Enchanting fliell ! the fullen Cares, 
And frantic Paffions, hear thy foft controul. 

pomp of diclion, and luxuriant harmoay of numbers ; as in its 
more rapid and irrcfiftible courfe, when fwoln and hurried away 
by the conflict of tumultuous paffions. 

* Power of harmony to calm the turbulent paHlons of the foul. 
The thoughts are borrowed from the firft Pythian of Pindar. 



On Thracia's hills the Lord of War 
Has curbed the fury of his car. 
And drop'd his thirfty lance at thy command. 
* Perching on the fceptred hand 
Of Jove, thy magic lulls the feather'd king 
With ruffled plumes, and flagging wing : 
Quench'd in dark clouds of flumber lie 
The terror of his beak, and light'nings of his 

I. 3. 

Thee the voice, the dance obey. 
Tempered to thy warbled lay. 
O'er Idalia's velvet-green 
The rofy-crowned loves are feen 
On Cytherea's day 

* This is a weak imitation of fomc beautiful lines in the fame ode. 

f Power of harmony to produce all the graces of motion ia 
the body. 



With antic Sports, and blue-eyM Pleafures, 
Frifking light in frolic meafurcs ; 
Now purfuing, now retreating, 
Now in circling troops they meet : 
To brifk notes in cadence beating 

Glance their itiany-twinkling feet* 
Slow melting ftrains their Queen's approach 
declare : 

Where-e'er Ihe turns the Graces homage pay* 
With arms fublime, that float upon the air. 
In gliding ftate Ihe wins her eafy way : 
O'er her warm check, and rifing bofom, move 
The bloom of young dcfire, and purple 
light of Love. 

Homer. Od. o» 
Fhry N I CHV s, apud Atkenctum, 

II. r. Man's 

II. I. 

Man's feeble race what ills await ! 
Labour, and Penury, the racks of Pain, 
Difeafe, and Sorrow's weeping train. 
And Death, fad refuge from the ftorms of Fate! 
The fond complaint, my fong, difprove. 
And juftify the laws of Jove. 
Say, has he given in vain the heav'nly Mufe ? 
Night, and all her fickly dews. 
Her fpeftres wan, and birds of boding cry. 
He gives to range the dreary fky : 
-j- Till down the eaftern cliffs afar 
Hyperion's march they fpy, and glitt'ring 
lhafts of war. 

* To compenfate the real or imaginary ills of life, the Mufc 
was given us by the fame Providence that fends the day, by its 
chcarful prefence to dii'pel the gloom and terrors of the night. 

+ Or fecn the Morning's well-appointed flar 
Come marching up the eaftern hilU afar, 


G II. 2. In 


II. 2. 

* In climes beyond the folar -f- road. 
Where fliaggy forms o'er ice-built mountains 

The Mufe has broke the twilight gloom, 
To cheer the Ihiv'ring native's dull abode. 
And oft beneath the od'rous lhade 
Of Chili's boundlefs forefts laid. 
She deigns to hear the favage youth repeat 
In loofe numbers wildly fweet 
Their feather-cindtur'd chiefs, and dufky loves. 
Her track, where-e'er the Goddefs roves. 
Glory purfue, and gen'rous Shame, 
Th' unconquerable Mind, and Freedom's holy 

Extenfive influence of poetic genius over the remoteft and 
moft uncivilized nations : its connexion with liberty, and the vir- 
tues that naturally attend on it. [See the Erfc, Norwegian, and 
Wclfh Fragments, the Lapland and American fongs, &c.] 

+ " Extra anni folifque vias .'* Virgil. 

. " Tutta lontana dal camin del fole." Prtrarch, Canzon 2. 

IL 3. Woods 

II. 3. 

Woods that wave o'er Delphi's fteep^ 
Ifles, that crown th' Egean deep. 
Fields, that cool IHffus laves, 
Or vhere M-^ander's amber waves 
In lingering labyrinths creep, 
How do your tuneful echoes languifli^ 
Mute, but to the voice of Anguilh ? 
Where each old poetic mountain 
Infpiration breath 'd around ; 
EvVy fliade and hallowed fountain 
Murmur'd deep a folemn found : 

* Progrefs of Poetry from Greece to Italy, and from Italy to 
England. Chaucer was not unacquainted with the writings of 
Dante or of Petrarch. The Earl of Surry and Sir Thotnas Wyatt 
had travelled in Italy, and formed their tafte there. Spcnfer irai» 
Uted the Italian writers, and Milton improved on them : but this 
fchool expired foon after the Rcftofation, and a new one arofc On 
the French model, which has fubfifted ever fince. 



Till the fad Nine, in Greece's evil hour. 
Left their Parnaffus for the Latian plains. 
Alike they fcorn the pomp of tyrant Power, 
And coward Vice, that revels in her chains. 
When Latium had her lofty fpirit loft. 
They fought, oh Albion ! next thy fea-en- 
circled coaft 

III. !• 

Far from the fun and fummer-gale, 
In thy green lap was Nature's darling laid. 
What time, where lucid Avon ftray'd. 
To him the mighty mother did unveil 
Her awful face : the dauntlefs child 
Stretch'd forth his little arms, and fmil'd. 
This pencil take (ilie fald) v/hofe colours clear 
Richly paint the vernal year : 

* Shakefpearc. 



Thine too thefe golden kcySy immortal boy ! 
This can unlock the gates of Joy ; 
Of Horror that^ and thrilling Fears, 
Or ope the facred fource of fympathetic 

III. 1. 

Nor fccond he that rode fubllme 
Upon the feraph-wings of Ecftafy, 
The fecrcts of th' abyfs to fpy. 
^f- He pafs'd the flaming bounds of Place and 
Time ; 

J The living throne, the fiipphire blaze. 
Where angels tremble, while they gaze, 

* Milton. 

+ " flammantia mccnia mundi.'* Lucretius. 

X For the fpirit of the living creature was in the wheels. — And 
above the firmament that was over their heads, was the likencfs qf 

a throne, as the appearance of a fapphirc (lone. This was the 

appearance of the glory of the Lord. 

Ezckiel \, 20. 26. 28. 


96 The progress of POESY, 

He faw ; but, blalled with execfs of light, 
''^Clos'd his eyes in endlefs night, 
Behold, where Dryden's lefs prefumptuous 

Wide o'er the fields of glory bear 
Two courfers of ethereal race, 
;|: With necks in thunder cloath'd, and long- 
refounding pace, 

III. 3. 

Hark, his hands the lyre explore ! 
Bright^ey'd Fancy, hovVing o'er^ 

•f Meant to exprefs the flatcly march and founding energy of 
Dr) den's rhymes. 

:^ Haft thou clothed his neck with thunder ? Job* 



Scatters from her pidtur'd urn 

* Thoughts that breathe, and words that burn. 

^ But ah ! 'tis heard no more — 

Oh ! Lyre divine, what daring fpirlt 

Wakes thee now ? tho' he inherit 

Nor the pride, nor ample pinion, 

J That the Theban Eagle bear. 

Sailing with fupreme dominion 

Through the azure deep of air : 

* Words that weep, and tears that fpeak. Cowley. 

+ We have had in our language no other odes of the fublime 
kind, than that of Dryden on St. Cecilia's day : for Cowley, who 
had his merit, yet wanted judgement, ftyle, and harmony, for fuch 
a tafk. That of Pope is not worthy of fo great a man. Mr. Ma- 
fon indeed, of late days has touched the true chords, and with a 

mafterly hand, in fome of his chorufes, above all in the laft of 

Caraftacus : 

Hark ! heard ye not yon footftep dread ? &c« 

J Aik wpo? opvt^et 5sTov. Olymp. 2. Pindar compares himfelf 
to that bird, and his enemies to ravens that croak and clamour in 
vain below, while it purfues its flight, regardlcfs of thcirnoife. 



Yet oft before his infant eyes would run 
Such forms as glitter in the Mufc's ray. 
With orient hues, unborrowed of the fun : 
Yet fliall he mount, and keep his diftant way 
Beyond the limits of a vulgar fate, 
Peneath the Good how far — but far above 
the Great. 



B A R D. 




The following Ode is founded on a Tradi- 
tion current in Wales, that Edward the Firft. 
when he completed the conqueft of that coun- 
try, ordered all the Bards that fell into his 
hands to be put to death. 


B A R D, 



I. I. 

U I N feize thee, ruthlefs King. 
* Confufion on thy banners wait ; 
^ Tho' fannM by Conqueft's crimfon wing, 
^ They mock the air with idle ftate ! 

* Mocking the air with colours idly fpread. 

Shakespeare's King John^ 

* Helm, 

102 The bard. 

^ Helm, nor Hauberk's twifted mail, 
^ Nor even thy virtues, Tyrant, fhall avail 
^ To fave thy fecret foul from nightly fears, 
^ From Cambria's curie, from Cambria's 

tears ! 

Such were the founds that o'er the -j- crcfled 

Of the firft Edward fcatter'd wild difmay. 
As down the fteep of j Snowdon's ihagg)^ fide 
He wound with tollfome march his long array. 

* The Hauberk was a texture of fteel ringlets, or rings interwo- 
ven, forming a coat of mail, that fat clofe to the body, and adapted 
itfelf to every motion. 

-f- The crefted adder's pride. Dryden*s Indian Queen. 

^ Snozudon was a name given by the Saxons to that mountainous 
tra<5l which the Welfh themfelves call Craigian-eryn : it included 
all the highlands of Caernarvonlhire and Merioncthfliire, as far caft ^ 
as the river Conway. R. Hygden, fpeaking of the caftle of Con- 
"way, built there by King Edward the Firft, fays, " Ad ortum am- 

nis Conway ad clivum montis Erery;" and Matthew of Weft- 
minfter, (ad ann. 1283}, *' Apud Aberconway ad pedes mdntis 

Snowdonix fecit erig caftrum forte.'* 



Stout Glo'iler flood aghaft in fpeechlefs 
trance ! 

To arms ! cried Mortimer -j-, and couch 'd his 
quivVing lance. 

I. 2. 

On a rock, whofe haughty brow 
Frowns o'er old Conway's foaming flood. 
Robed in the fable garb of woe, 
With haggard eyes the Poet flood ; 
(I Loofe his beard, and hoary hair 
II Streamed, like a meteor, to the troubled air;) 

* Gilbert de Clare, furnamed the Red, Earl «f Gloucefter and 
Hertford, fon-in-law to King Edward. 

+ Edmond de Mortimer, Lord of Wigmore. 

They both were Lords Marchers^ whofe lands lay on the borders 
«f Wales, and probably accompanied the King in this expedition. 

\ The image was taken from a well-known pi6lure of Raphael, 
reprcfenting the Supreme Being in the vifion of Ezekiel. There arc 
two of thefc paintings, both believed original, one at f loience, the 
ether at Paris. 

I Shone, like a meteor, breaming to the wind. 

Milton'* Paradifc Lojl, 


I04 The BAR D. 

And with a mafter's hand, and prophet^ fifc^ 
Struck the deep forrows of his lyre. 

* Hark, how each giant-oak, and dcfert-cave, 
^ Sigh to the torrent's awful voice beneath ! 

^ O'er thee, oh King ! their hundred arms 
they wave, 

* Revenge on thee in hoarfer murmurs breathe ; 
^ Vocal no more, fince Cambria's fatal day, 

* To high-born Hoel's harp, or (oft Llewel- 

lyn's lay. 

I. 3' 

* Cold is Cadwallo's tongue, 
« That hulh'd the ftormy main : 
^ Brave Urien ilceps upon his craggy bed : 

* Mountains, ye mourn in vain 

* Modred, whofe magic fong 

* Made huge Plinlimmon bow his cloud-top 'd 

head. On 


^ On dreary Arvon's fhore they He, 
^ Smear'd with gore, and ghaftly pale : 
^ Far, far aloof th' affrighted ravens fail ; 
^ The famifh'd eagle -f- fcreams, and pafles by. 
^ Dear loft companions of my tuneful art, 
^ Dear X, as the light that vifits thefe fad eyes, 
^ Dear, as the ruddy drops that warm my 

* Ye died amidft your dying country's cries — 

* The fhorcs of Caernarvonfliire oppofite to the ifle of Anglefey. 

•f Camden and others obferve, that eagles ufed annually to build 
their aerie among the rocks of Snowdon, which from thence (as 
fome think) were named by the Welch Cratgian'tryri, or the crags 
of the eagles. At this day (I am told) the higheft point of Snow- 
don is called the Eaglets Nejl. That bird is certainly no ftranger to 
this ifland, as the Scots, and the people of Cumberland, WeL^mor- 
land, &c. can teftify : it even has built its neft in the Peak of Der- 
byfhire. [See Willoughby's Ornithol. publifhed by Ray.] 

J As dear to me as are the ruddy drops 
That vifit my fad heart — 

Shakespeare's Jul, Cafir* 

' No 

io6 The B A R D. 

^ No more I weep* They do not fleep. 
' On yonder cliffs, a grielly band, 
^ I fee them fit, they linger yet, 
^ Avengers of their native land : 
^ With me in dreadful harmony they join, 
* And weave * with bloody hands the tiffue 
of thy line/ 

II. I, 

Weave the v/arp, and weave the woof. 
The winding-fheet of Edward's race. 
" Give ample room, and verge enough 
^' The characters of hell to trace. 
" Mark the year, and mark the night, 
" When Severn lliall re-echo with affright 

* Svfe the Norwegian ode that follows. 

" The 


The Ihricks of deaths thro' Berkley's roofs 

that ring. 
Shrieks of an agonizing King ! 
She-wolf of France-f-^with unrelentingfangs^ 
^' That tear 'ft the bowels of thy m^.ngled mate, 
" From thee % be born, who o'er thy country 

The fcourr^e of Heav'n* What terrors 

round him wait ! 
Amazement in his van, with flight combined, 
And Sorrow's faded form, and Solitude 


* Edwaid the Stcond, cruelly butchered in Berkley caftlc. 

+ Ifabel of France, Ldward the Second's adulterous Queen. 

% Triumphs of Edwaid the 1 hird in France. 

H II. 2. Mighty 

io8 The B A R D. 

II. 2. 

" Mighty Vidior, mighty Lord, 

Low on his funeral couch he lies ! 

No pitying heart, no eye, afford 
^' A tear to grace his obfequies* 
*^ Is the fable warrior ^ fled ? 
" Thy fon is gone. He refts among the dead. 

The fwarm that in thy noon-tide beam were 
born ? 

^' Gone to falute the rifing Morn. 

Fair laughs the Morn %y and foft the zephyr 

While proudly riding o'er the azure realm 
In gallant trim the gilded veffel goes ; 
Youth on the prow, and pleafure at the helm; 

* Death of that king, aboncloned by his children, and even rob- 
t>ed in his lail moments by his courtiers and his millrefs. 

+ Edward the Black Prince, dead feme time before his father* 

% Magnificence of Richard the Second's reign. Sec Froiffard and 
other contemporary writers, 

« Regard- 


^' That, hulh'd in grim repofe, expedts his 

II. 3. 

Fill high the fparkling bowl^ 
The rich repaft prepare. 
Reft of a crown, he yet may fliare the feaft x 
Clofe by the regal chair 
Fell thirft and famine fcowl 
>^ A baleful fmile upon their baffled gueft. 
Heard ye the din of battle bray ^f, 
Lance to lance, and horfe to horfe ? 

* Richard the Second, as we are told by Archbiftiop Scroop and 
the confederate Lords in their manifefto, by Thomas of Walfingham, 
and all the older writers, was ftarved to death. The ftory of his 
aflaflination by Sir Piers of Exon, is of much later date. 

+ Ruinou* civil warg of York and Lancafter, 

Ha Long 

110 The B a R 

Long 3^ears of havock urge their deftm^ 

" And through the kindred fquadrons mow 
their way. 

With manj^ a foul and midnight murder fed. 
Revere his confort's ^ faith, his father's J 

And fpare the meek ufurper's § holy head. 
Above, below, the rofe of fnow j], 
Twin'd with her bluihing foe, w'e fpread ! 

♦ Henry the Sixth, George Duke of Clarence, Edward the Fifth, 
Rk"Haiti Diakc of York, &c. believed to be murdered fecretly in 
the Tower of London- The oldell: part of that lii utiuic u vulgarly 
attributed to Julius Ca: far. 

Margaret of Acjou, a woman of heroic fpirit, who ftnigglcd 
hard to Cave her fau^bar^d asd her crown* 

J Hetny the Fifth. 

Henry the Sixth, very near being canonized. The line of Laa- 
caHcr had no rx^ht of inhcrUancc to the crown. 

I Tht vhiieand red rofcs, dcviccj of York and Lancaflcr. 

« The 


The briftled boar * in infant gore 
Wallows beneath the thorny {hade* 
Now, Brothers, bending o'er th' accurfed 

" Stamp we our vengeance deep, and ratify 
his doom* 

III. I. 

Edward, lo ! to fudden fate 

(Weave we the woof. The thread is fpun.) 

-f- Half of thy heart w^e confecrate. 

(The web is wove. The work is done.)"^ 
^ Stay, oh flay ! nor thus forlorn 
* Leave me unblefs'd, unpity y, here to mourn : 

* The filver boar was the badge of Richard the Third ; whence 
he was ufually known in his own time by the name of the Boar. 

+ Eleanor of Caftile died a few ye. rs after the conqueft of Wales* 
The heroic proof fhe gave of her aifeftion for her lord is well known. 
The monuments of his regret and forrow for the lofs of her, arc ftill 
to be feen at Northampton, Gaddington, Waltham, and other 

H 3 * In 

112 The bard. 

^ In yon bright tracks that fires the wefl:ernfkies> 
^ They melt, they vanifti from my eyes, 
f But oh ! what folemn fcenes on Snowdon's 

^ Defcendlngflow their glittering fkirts unroll ? 
^ Vifions of glory ! fpare my aching fight, 
^ Ye unborn ages, crowd not on my foul ! 
^ No more our long-loft Arthur we bewail. 
* AU-hall, ye genuine Kings -f-, Britannia's 
ilTue, hail ! 

III. 2. 

^ Girt with many a Baron bold 
f Sublime their ftarry fronts they rear ; 

* It was the common belief of the Welfh nation, that King Ar- 
thur was ftill alive in Fairy-land, and fhould return again to reign 
ever Britain, 

i Both Merlin and TalieiTin had prophefied, that the Welih 
(hould regain their fovercignty over this ifland ; w hich icemed to 
be accomplifhcd in the houfe of Tudor. 

' And 


^ And gorgeous Dames, and State&ien old 
^ In bearded majefty, appear. 
^ In the midft a form divine ! 

Her eye proclaims her of the Briton-line ; 
^ Her lion-port *, her awe-commanding face, 
^ Attempered fweet to virgin-grace. 
^ What firings fmy phonious tremble in the air ! 
^ What ftrains of vocal tranfport round her play ! 
^ Hear from the grave, great Talieflin-f', hear; 
^ They breathe a foul to animate thy clay. 

* BrightRapture calls, and foaring, as fhe lings, 
^ Waves in the eye of Heaven her mai>y -co- 
loured wings, 

* Speed, relating an audience given by Queen Elizabeth to Paul 
Dzialinfki, ambaffador of Poland, fays * And thus {he,lion-likc rifmg, 

* daunted the malapert orator no lefs -with her ftately port and ma- 

* jeftical deporture, than with the tartpeffe of her princelie checkes.* 

+ Talieflin, chief of the Bards, flouriihed in the fixth century. 
His -works are ftill preferred, and his memory held in high venera- 
tion among his country-men. 

H 4 III. 3. ' The 

114 The B A Pv D. 

III. 3. 

^ The verfe adorn again 
^ *^ Fierce War, and faithful Love, 
^ And Truth fevere, by fairy Fidtion draft, 
^ In -j- bufkin'd meafures move 
* Pale Grief, and pleafing pain, 
^ With Horror, tyran^f the throbbing breaft» 
^ A ;|; voice, as of the cherub-choir, 
^ Gales from blooming Eden bear ; 
^ § And diftant warblings leflen on my ear, 
^ That loft in long futurity expire. 
^ Fojid impious man, thinkft thou 5^on fan- 

guine cloud, 
^ Raised by thy breath, has quenched the orb 

of day ? 

* Fierce wars and faithful loves (hall moralize my fong. 

Spenser's Proem to the Fairy Queen, 

+ Shakefpeare. 
X Milton. 

\ The fucceflion of Poets after Milton's time. 

' To, 


* To-morrow he repairs the golden flood, 
^ And warms the nations with redoubled ray. 
^ Enough for me : with joy I fee 
^ The different doom our fates aflign. 
^ Be thine Defpair, and fceptred Care ; 
^ To triumph, and to die, are mine.' 
He fpoke, and headloAg, from the mountain's 

Deep in the roaring tide he plung'd to endlefs 


Fatai. Si s ters . 


An ode. 

(From the Norse Tongue.) 

To be found in the Orcades of Thermodus 
ToRF.5:us ; Hafni.ii^ ^^97 ^ Folio; and 
alfo in BartholiisUS, 

ViTT er orpit fyrir valfalli^ Sec. 


The author once had thoughts (in concert 
with a friend) of giving A Hijory of Englijh 
JPoetry : In the Introduction to it he meant tQ 
have produced fome fpecimens of the ftyle 
that reigned in antient times among the neigh- 
bouring nations, or thofe who had fubdued 
the greater part of this ifland, and were our 
progenitors : the following three imitations 
made a part of them. He afterwards drop- 
ped his defign ; efpecially after he had heard, 
that it was already in the hands of a perfon 
well qualified to do it juftice, both by his 
tafle, and his refearches into antiquity* 


I N the eleventh century, Sigurd, Eari of the 
Orkney Iflands, went with a fleet of fliips, 
and a confiderable body of troops, into Ire- 
land, to the affiilance of Sigtijg with the filkm 
beardj who was then making war on his father- 
in-law Briany King of Dublin. The Earl 
and all his forces were cut to pieces, and Si^- 
tryg was in danger of a total defeat ; but the 
enemy had a greater lofs, by the death of 
B'rian^ their King, who fell in the aftion. 
On Chiilmas-day, (the day of the battle,) a 
native of Caithnefs in Scotland faw, at a dif- 
tance, a number of perfons on horfeback, 
riding full fpeed towards a hill, and feeming 
to enter into it. Curiofity led him to follow 



them ; till looking through an openhig in the 
rocks, he faw twelve gigantic 'figures refem- 
bling women : they were all emploj^ed about 
a loom, and as they wove, they fung the fol- 
lowing dreadful fong ; which w hen they had 
finiflied, they tore the web into twelve pieces, 
and, each takhig her portion, galloped fix to 
the north, and as many to the fouth^ 




An ode. 

IN OW the ftorm begins to lower, 
(Hafte, the loom of hell prepare,) 
* Iron fleet of arrowy fliower 
Hurtles in the darkened air. 

Note. — The Valkyrhir were female divinities, fervants Odin Tcr 
Woden) in the Gothic mythology. Their name fignifies C/izz/^rj ^ 
thejlain. They were mounted on fwift horfes, with drawn fwords 
in their hands ; and in the throng of battle felefted fuch as were def- 
tined to flaughter, and conduced them to Valhalla, (the hall of Odin^ 
or paradifc of the brave.) where they attended the banquet, and 
fcrved the departed heroes with horns of mead and ale. 

* How quick they wheel'd, and, flying, behind them (hot 
Sharp fleet of arrowy fhower — Milt. Par, Regained, 

f The noife of battle hurtled in the air. Shakes. JuL Q(zf, 


122 The fatal SISTERS. 

GlittVing lances are the loom. 
Where the dufky warp we ftrain. 
Weaving many a foldier's doom, 
Orkney's woe, and Randver's bane. 

See the grifly texture grow ! 
('Tis of human entrails made,) 
And the weights that play below. 
Each a gafping warrior's head. 

Shafts for Ihuttles, dipt in gore. 
Shoot the trembling cords along. 
Sword, that once a monarch bore. 
Keep the tiffue clofe and ftrong^ 

MJlay black terrific maid, 
Sangrida, and Hilda^ fee ! 


An ode 

Join the wayward work to aid : 
*Tis the woof of vidtory. 

Ere the ruddy fun be fet^ 
Pikes muft Ihiver, javelins fing. 
Blade with clatt'ring buckler meet. 
Hauberk cralh, and helmet ring. 

(Weave the crimfon web of war^) 
Let us go, and let us fly. 
Where our friends the conflidt fhare. 
Where they triumph, where they die. 

As the paths of fate we tread. 
Wading thro' th' enfanguin'd field, 
Gondulay and Geiray fpread 
O^er the youthful King your Ihield* 


We the reins to flaughter give. 
Ours to kill^ and ours to fpare : 
Spite of danger he fhall live. 
(Weave the crimfon web of war.) 

They, whom once the defert-beach 
Pent within its bleak domain. 
Soon their ample fway fliall ftretch 
O'er the plenty of the plain. 

Low the dauntleft Earl is laid, 
Gor'd with m.any a gaping wound : 
Fate demands a nobler head ; 
Soon a King fliall bite the ground. 

Long his lofs fliall Eirin weep. 
Ne'er again his likenefs fee ; 

* Ireland, 

An O D E. 12$ 

Long her ftrains in forrow fteep^ 
Strains of immortality ! 

Horror covers all the heath. 
Clouds of carnage blot the fun. 
Sifters, weave the web of death. 
Sifters, ceafe : The work is done. 

Hail the tafk^ and hail the hands ! 
Songs of joy and triumph fing ; 
Joy to the victorious bands ; 
Triumph to the younger King. 

Mortal^ thou that hear'ft the tale, 
Learn the tenour of our fong. 
Scotland, thro' each winding vale. 
Far and wide the notes prolong. 



Sifters, henoc with fpurs of fpeed ! 
Each her thundering faulchion wield ; 
Each beftride her fable fteed. 
Hurry, hurry, to the field ! 




An ODE- 

(From the Norse Toncfe.) 

To be found in Bartholinfs^ de caufiis 
contemnendae mortis; Hafni.^:^ 1689, 

Upreis Odinn Allda gajjtr, &c. 


An ode. 

U PROSE the King of men with fpeed. 
And faddled flrait his coal-black fteed : 
Down the yawning fleep he rode^ 
That leads to He la's drear abode* 
Him the dog of darknefs fpied ; 
His fliaggy throat he opened wide, 

* Niflheimr, the hell of the Gothic nations, conGfled of nine 
worlds, to which were devoted all fuch as died of ficknefs, old age, 
or by any other means than in battle. Over it prefided He la, the 
Goddefs of Dcalh. 


1 30 The descent of ODIN. 

While from his jaws^ with carnage fiU'd, 
Foam and human gore diftill'd. 
Hoarfe he bays with hideous din^ 
Eyes that glow, and fangs that grin ; 
And long purfues, with fruitlefs yell. 
The father of the powerful fpell. 
Onward ftlU his way he takes, 
(The groaning earth beneath him fhakes,) 
Till full Tjefore' his fearlefs eyes 
The portals nine of hell arife. 

Right againft the eaftern gate, 
By the mofs-grown pile he fat, 
Where long of yore to fleep was laid 
The dull of the prophetic Maid, 
Facing to the northern clime. 
Thrice he traced the Runic rhyme j 


A N O D 1 :> 

Thrice pronounced, in accents dread. 
The thrilling verfe that wakes the dead ; 
Till from out the hollow ground 
Slowly breath'd a fullen found. 

What call unknown, what charms, prefumc 
To break the quiet of the tomb ? 
Who thus afflifts my troubled fprite. 
And drags me from the realms of night ? 
Long on thefe mouldering bones have beat 
The winter's fnow, the fummer's heat. 
The drenching dews, and driving rain ! 
Let me, let me fleep again. 
Who is he, with voice unbleft, - 
That calls me from the bed of reft ? 


The descent of ODIN. 

O D I N» 

A Traveller to thee unknown. 

Is he that calls^ a warrior's fon. 

Thou the deeds of light lhalt know ; 

Tell me what is done below. 

For whom yon glltt'ring board is fpread, 

Prefl: for whom yon golden bed. 


Mantling in the goblet fee 
The pure bevVage of the bee ; 
O'er it hangs the fliield of gold : 
Tis the drink of Balder bold. 
Balder s head to death is giv^n. 
Pain can reach the Sons of Heav'n ! 
Umvilling I my lips unclofe : 
Leave me, leave me to repofe. 

O P I N. 

An ode. 


Once again my call obey. 
Propheteis, arife, and fay. 
What dangers Odin's child await. 
Who the author of his fate. 

In Hoders hand the hero's doom ; 
His brother fends him to the tomb. 
Now my weary lips I clofe : 
Leave me, leave me to repofe. 


Prophetefs, my fpell obey ; 

Once again arlfe, and fay. 

Who th' avenger of his guilt. 

By whom 4hall Hcders blood be fpilt. 

I j4 The DESCENT of ODIN. 

In the caverns of the wcS:^ 
By Odin's, fierce embrace compreff^ 
A wond'roiis lx>y fllalJ Rin^ bear^ 
Who ne^er fhall comb his raven hair^ 
Nor wafh his vifage m the ftrearn^ 
Nor fee the fun^s departing bcam^ 
Till he on Hoders corfe fliall fmile 
Flaming on the funeral pile. 
Now my weary lips I clofe : 
Leave me, leavs me to repofe* 


Yet av;hile my call obey ; 
Prophetefs, awake^ and fay. 
What Virgins thefe, in fpeechlefs woe. 
That bend to earth their folemn brow. 


An O D E- 

That their flaxen treflcs tear. 
And fnowy veils, that float in air. 
Tell me whence their forrows rofe : 
Then I leave thee to repofe. 

Ha ! no Traveller art thou. 
King of Men, I know thee now ; 
Mightiefl: of a mighty line — 

No boding Maid of fkill divine 
Art thou, nor Prophetefs of good. 
But mother of the giant-brood ! 

Hie thee hence, and boafl: at home. 
That never fliall enquirer come 

136 The descent of ODIN. 

To break my iron-fleep again ; 
Till Lok * has burft his tenfold chain. 
Never, till fubftantial Night 
Has reafum'd her antient right ; 
Till wrapt in flames, in ruin hurl'd. 
Sinks the fabric of the world, 

* Lok Is the Evil Being, who continues in chains till the Twilight 
ef the Gods approaches; when he fliall break his bonds; the human 
race, the ftars, and fun, fhall difappcar; the earth fink in the feas, 
and fire confunric the fkies : even Odin himfelf and his kindred dei- 
ties fhall pcrifh. For a farther explanation of this mythology, fee 
" Introdudion a 1' Hiftoire de Dannemarc par Monf. Mallet," 1755, 
Quarto ; or rather a tranflation ©f it publifhed in 1770, and intitlcd, 
*' Northern Antiquities ;" in which fome millakcs in the original are 
judicioufly correftcd. 





Mr. Evans's Specimen of the Wellh Poetry j 
London, 1764, Quarto. 

A D V E R T I S E M E N 

Owen fucceeded his father Griffin in the 
principality of North Wales, A. D. 1 120. 
This battle was fought near forty years af- 



OwEN^s pralfe demands my fong, 
Owen fwift^ and Owen ftrong ; 
Faireft flower of Rodericks ilem, 
Gwyneth^s * fliield, and Britain's gem. 
He nor heaps his brooded ftores. 
Nor on all profufely pours ; 

* North Wal«6. 




Lord of every regal art, 
Liberal hand, and open heart, 

Big with hofts of mighty name. 
Squadrons three againft him came ; 
This the force of Eirin hiding ; 
Side by fide as proudly ridings 
On her lhadow long and gay 
Lochlin * plows the watVy way ; 
There the Norman fails afar 
Catch the winds, and join the war ; 
Black and huge along they fweep. 
Burthens of the angry deep. 

Dauntlefs on his native fands 
The dragon-fon ^f- of Mona ftands j 

* Denmark. 

+ The red Dragon is the device of Cadwallador, which all his 
defcendants bore on their banners. 



In glittering arms and glory dreft. 
High he rears his ruby creft. 
There the thundering ftrokes begin. 
There the prefs, and there the din ; 
Talymalfra^s rocky Ihore 
Echoing to the battle's roar. 
Where his glowing eye-balls turn, 
Thoufand banners round him burn : 
Where he points his purple fpear, 
Hafty, hafty Rout is there ; 
Marking with indignant eye 
Fear to ftop, and fliame to fly. 
There Confufion, Terror's child ; 
Conflid: fierce^ and Ruin wild ; 
Agony, that pants for breath ; 
Defpair, and honourable Death. 


K 2 

EP I- 


K 3 


Mrs. CLARKE", 

where this filent marble weeps^ 
A Friend, a Wife, a Mother lleeps : 
A Heart, within whofe facred cell 

' n 

The peaceful Virtues lov'd to dwell. 
Aifedtion warm, and Faith fincere^ 
And foft Humanity were there. 
In agony, in death refign'd, 
She felt the wound Ihe left behind. 

* This Lady, the wife of Dr. Clarke, Phyfician, at Epfom, died 
April 27, 1757 ; and is buried in ihc church of Beckenham, Kent. 

o N 


K 4 


146 E P I T A P H, &c. 

Her infant image, here below. 

Sits fmiling on a father's woe : 

Whom what awaits, while yet he ftrays 

Along the lonely vale of days ? 

A pang to fecret forrow dear ; 

A figh ; an unavailing tear ; 

Till Time lliall ev'ry grief remove. 

With Llfc^ with Memory, and with Love. 








The Curfew tolls ^ the knell of parting day. 
The lowing herd wind flowly o'er the lea. 
The plowman homeward plods his weary way. 
And leaves the world to darknefs, and to me. 

* fquilla di lontano 

Che paia '1 giorn® pianger, chc li muore. 

Daw TE; Purgat, i, 8. 



Now fades the glimmering landfcape on the fight. 
And all the air a folemn ftillnefs holds. 
Save where the beetle wheels his droning flight. 
And drowfy tinklings lull the diflant folds ; 

Save that from yonder ivy-mantled tower. 
The moping owl does to the moon complain 
Of fuch, as wand'ring near her fecret bower, 
Molcft her antient folitary reign. 

Beneath thofc rugged elms, that yew-tree's fliade. 
Where heaves the turf in many a mouldring heap. 
Each in his narrow cell for ever laid. 
The rude Forefathers of the hamlet fleep. 

The breezy call of incenfe -breathing Morn, 
The fvvallow twittering from the ftraw-built Ihed, 
The cock's flirill clarion, or the echoing horn. 
No more fliall roufc them from their lowly bed. 



Fdr them no more the blazing hearth lhall burn 
Or bufy houfewife ply her evening-care ; 
No children run to lifp their fire's return. 
Or climb his knees the envied kifs to lhare. 

Oft did the harvefl to their fickle yield. 
Their furrow oft the ftubborn glebe has broke : 
How jocund did they drive their team afield ! 
How bow'd the woods beneath their fturdy ftroke 

Let not Ambition mock their ufeful toil. 
Their homely joys, and deftiny obfcure ; 
Nor grandeur hear with a difdainful fmile. 
The Ihort and fimple annals of the poor, > 

The boaft of heraldry, the pomp of power. 
And all that beauty, all that wealth e'er gave. 
Await alike th' inevitable hour. 
The paths of glory lead but to the grave. 


Nor you, ye proud, impute to thefe the fault. 
If Memory o'er their tomb no trophies raife. 
Where thro' the long-drawn ifle and fretted vault. 
The pealing anthem fwells the note of praife. 

Can floried urn or animated buft. 
Back to its manfion call the fleeting breath ? 
Can Honour's voice provoke the filent duft, , 
Or flattery footh the dull cold ear of Death ? 

Perhaps in this neglected fpot is laid 
Some heart once pregnant with celefl:ial fire ; 
Hands that the rod of empire might have fway^d. 
Or wak'd to ecfl:afy the living lyre» 

But Knowledge to their eyes her ample page 
Rich with the fpoils of Time did ne'er unroll ; 
Chill Penury reprefs'd their noble rage. 
And froze the genial current of the foul. 


Full many a gem of pureil ray ferene. 
The dark unfathom'd caves of Ocean bear : 
Full many a flower is born to blufli unfeen. 
And wafte its fweetnefs on the defert air. 

Some village-Hampden, that with dauntlefsbreail. 
The little tyrant of his fields withftood ; 
Some mute inglorious Milton here may reft. 
Some Cromwell guiltlefs of his country's blood. 

Tfi' applaufe of lift'ning fenates to command. 
The threats of pain and ruin to defpife. 
To fcatter plenty o'er a fmiling land, 
And read their hift'ry in a nation's eyes. 

Their lot forbade : nor circumfcrib'd alone 
Their growing virtues, but their crimes confin'd; 
Forbade to wade thro' flaughter to a throne. 
And fliut the gates of mercy to mankind. 


154 ELEGY written in a 

The ftruggling pangs of confcious Truth to hide. 
To quench the bluflies of Ingenuous Shame, 
Or heap the Ihrine of Luxury and Pride 
With incenfe kindled at the Mufe's flame. 

Far from the madding crowd's ignoble ftrife. 
Their fober wiflies never learn'd to ftray ; 
Along the cool fequefter'd vale of life 
They kept the noifelefs tenour of their way. 

Yet ev'n thefe bones from infult to protedt 
Some frail memorial fl:ill erefted nigh. 
With uncouth rhymes and fliapelefs fculpturc 

Implores the pafling tribute of a figh. 



Their name, their years, fpelt by th^ unlettered 

The place of fame and elegy fupply ; 
And many a holy text around fhe flrews, 
That teach the ruftic moralift to die. 

For who ^o dumb Forgetfulnefs a prey. 
This pleafing anxious being e'er refign'd. 
Left the warm precind's of the chearful day^ 
Nor caft one longing lingering look behind ? 

On fome fond breaft the parting foul relies. 
Some pious drops the doling eye requires ; 
Ev'n from the tomb the voice of Nature cries, 
Ev'n in our allies ^ live their wonted fires. 

* Ch'i vcggio nel penfier, dolce mlo fuoco, 
Fredda una lingua, 8c due begli occhi chiud 
Rimaner doppo noi pien di favillc. 

Petrarch, Son. iGg, 

L For 


For thee, who mindful of th' unhonour'd Dead 
Doft in thefe lines their artlefs tale relate ; 
If chance, by lonely Contemplation led, 
Some kindred fpirit lhall inquire thy fate. 

Haply fome hoary-hcaded fvvain may fay, 
^ Oft have we feen him at the peep 'of dawn, 
^ Brulhing with hafty fteps the dews away 
^ To meet the fun upon the upland lawn. 

^ There at the foot of yonder nodding beech, 
^ That wreathes its old fantaftic root fo high, 
^ His liftlefs length at noon-tide would he flretch, 
^ And pore upon the brook that babbles by. 

^ Hard by yon wood, now fmiling as in fcorn, 

^ MuttVing his wayward fancies he would rove ; 

^ Now drooping, woeful wan, like one forlorn, 

^ Or craz'd with care, or crofs'd in hopelefs love. 

^ One 


^ One morn I mifs'd him on the cuftom'd hill, 
* Along the ^eath and near his favourite tree ; 
^ Another camq^ ; nor yet befide the rill, 
^ Nor up the lawn, nor at the wood was he J 

^ The next with dirges due in fad array 
^ Slow thro"* the church-way path we faw him 

^ Approach and read (for thou canft read) the lay 
^ Grav'd on the ftone, beneath yon aged thorn*.* 

* In the firft edition of this poem, the following beautiful lines were 
infcrted immediately before the epitaph ; but they have been fiacc omitted, 
as the par«ntheGs was thought too long : 

There fcattered oft, the earlieR: of the year, 
By hands unfeen, are fhow'rs of violets found; 
The redbrcaft loves to build and warble there, 
And little footfteps lightly print the ground. 


[ 153 J 

The epitaph. 

Here reds his head upon the lap of Earth 

A Youth^ to Fortune and to Fame unknown : 
Fair Science frown'd not on his humble birth^ 

And Melancholy mark'd him for her ov/n» 

Large was his bonn!-y, and his foul finccre, 
Heav'n did a recor- ;:ncc as largely fend : 
Pie gave to L ... ^. wC had^ a tear, 
He gain'd from Plcav'n ('twas all he wilh'd) a 

No farther feck his merits to difclofe, 
Or draw his frailties from their dread abode^ 
(There they alike in trembling hope repofe,) 
The bofom of his Father and his God. 

* Paventofa fpeme. Petrarc h, 5'o??. 114.